SCR into deaths of Northants couple in freezing home

Northamptonshire’s safeguarding adults board is to conduct a serious case review into the death of an older couple found dead in their freezing home last week.

The review will examine the involvement of professionals in the care of Derek and Jean Randall, a couple in their 70s. Jean was a disabled person and her husband was her carer.

The case had raised widespread concern after it was reported that local MP Sally Keble contacted the council before Christmas to raise concerns about their welfare.

The council defended its actions to protect the couple. Cabinet member for health and adult social services Robin Brown said: “Our initial findings show that contrary to speculation, the county’s key organisations were speaking with and visiting Mr and Mrs Randall throughout December and indeed on a regular basis beforehand. Nonetheless we need to see if there is anything more or different which could or should have been done.”

The results of the review are expected to be published before the end of May.

Social services will be represented on the committee by Northamptonshire’s director of health and adult social care, Charles MacNally.

Age Concern Northamptonshire was contacted by the Randalls in the week before Christmas for information about possible support.

Liam Condron, chief officer of Age Concern Northamptonshire, said: “[We were not given] any sense of the desparate plight they were in.”

He added: “My concern is that [the SCR] shouldn’t simply be an opportunity to defend themselves and point their fingers at other people. That will have very little benefit for the Randalls.”

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